Sam Barlow, the writer and designer of Silent Hill: Shattered Memories and Aisle, is working on a new title for PC, Mac and iOS users. The title, Her Story, will be evoking a blast from the past as a full FMV game.
FMV stands for “full motion video”, and was a sub genre of games utilized during the 1980’s to mid 1990’s. Starting out in arcades and later migrating to the PC and CD-based console systems such as the 3DO or Sega CD, many titles under the FMV genre were considered cutting edge back in the 1990s, but have aged poorly over time. Some of the most reviled games in history are FMV titles, including Night Trap, Sewer Shark, and Mad Dog McCree.
Her Story will follow in these footsteps, while attempting to avoid the shortcomings of the genre, as you watch grainy police database footage of a woman, discussing the disappearance of her husband. Her Story will also be a very minimalist experience; according to Barlow, players can”type search queries and the database returns clips of the answers where the woman speaks those words. “If you can Google, you can play Her Story.”
Barlow also elaborated that the search mechanic may be simplistic, but follows a non-linear progression which “quickly reveals its richness and complexity… a sculptural way of viewing a story.”
Since all interactivity is done through searching key worlds, Her Story will be a very minimal, investigative experience while watching videos and listening in for clues. Barlow has not revealed anything regarding the eventual goal of the game, but it is possible that there is none, except to hear the woman’s story, much like the games title.
Her Story will be the second FMV title to be released in the past two years. The first was The Tesla Effect: A Tex Murphy Adventure, which was kickstarted back in 2012. The Tesla Effect was released last year to mixed reviews.
Her Story will be an independent title, with Barlow promising the game will be released early in 2015. It is also currently on Steam Greenlight.
So is Her Story worth a look? Are FMV games making a minor comeback? Leave your comments below.